Vinícius Júnior’s late goal gives Madrid a 2-1 victory over Sevilla |

MADRID (AP) – Vinícius Júnior ran to the corner and performed a few samba moves near the flag before his teammates rushed over to kiss him.

The young Brazilian striker had just scored another decisive goal for Real Madrid. His beautiful late strike sealed a 2-1 victory over Sevilla on Sunday in a game between two of Spain’s best teams at the moment.

Vinícius Júnior had perfect control of the ball with his chest on the sideline before running past a few defenders. He fired a well-placed shot into the top corner from outside the area for a game-winning 87th-minute goal that delighted Madrid fans at the Santiago Bernabéu stadium.

“That’s what great players do, they capitalize on the chances they get and make a difference,” said Madrid midfielder Casemiro.

It was Vinícius Júnior’s second goal in the last three matches, and the 11th overall in his best season by distance since joining Madrid. He has already scored more goals now than in his previous three seasons in total.

“He’s extraordinary. He has something special on his feet, “said Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti.” It’s another step for him to become one of the best players in the world. “

Karim Benzema, another hot Madrid player, also scored to give the league leaders a top four point advantage over defending champions Atlético Madrid, who won 4-1 at Cadiz. Real Sociedad fell to third place after losing 1-0 to Espanyol, while Sevilla remained fourth, five points ahead.

Sevilla, undefeated for six consecutive league games, opened the scoring with a Rafa Mir header in the 12th. Benzema equalized at close range after a blunder by Sevilla goalkeeper Bono in the 32nd.

Madrid goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois made a big save in stoppage time to secure the hosts’ victory and keep Sevilla winless on the road against Madrid since 2008.

THE ATLEICO REBONDS

Atlético sank the goals in the second half, with Antoine Griezmann among the scorers for the victory in Cadiz.

Thomas Lemar, Ángel Correa and Matheus Cunha also scored after halftime for Atlético as he rebounded from a surprising home loss to AC Milan that put him in danger of elimination from the League of Nations. champions.

Diego Simeone’s side had won only one of their last four matches in all competitions.

After a slow start, Atlético got all three points by scoring three goals in 20 minutes.

Lemar broke the deadlock in the 56th, then Griezmann scored in the 70th and Correa in the 76th. Cunha added a fourth in the 86th, after Cadiz came close to a rare goal against Atlético goalkeeper Jan Oblak, who was unable to repel a lobed shot that crossed the box and to the over his head.

“We have to try to keep improving,” Simeone said. “It was important to win this game so that we could stay on track in the league.”

It was the second defeat in a row for Cadiz, who have won only once in their last 10 league games. He is 17th in the championship, just outside the relegation zone.

SOCIEDAD LOSES AGAIN

After ending their 17-game unbeaten streak against Monaco in the Europa League on Thursday, Real Sociedad lost to Espanyol.

The result sent Sociedad down to third place, just one point off the lead.

Yangel Herrera scored in 77th for Espanyol, who moved up to ninth place.

Sociedad saw a controversial goal from Alexander Isak in the second half disallowed because the ball hit the referee during preparation.

THE BETIS PROSPERS

Manuel Pellegrini’s Real Betis stayed close to Champions League places with a 3-1 home win over last-place Levante, striker Juanmi Jiménez scoring all three goals for the hosts in the second half.

Levante, who took the lead with a goal from Shkodran Mustafi, are the only side without a win after 15 league games. His winless streak in the competition is now 23 games, dating back to last season.

Betis are fifth with 27 points.

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